German anti-Islamist rally swells after attacks in France


Thousands are on the streets of Dresden, protesting Germany’s immigration policies and more specifically, Islam.

They’re part of the Patriotic Europeans Against the Islamization of the West.

Also known as PEGIDA.

The grassroots movement has been organizing weekly gatherings in the city, but this was the biggest number yet, with police estimating a turnout of some 25,000 protesters.

Their march comes in the wake of deadly Islamist militant attacks in France. One poster predicts similar attacks in the rest of Europe.

Across the street from the PEGIDA march, counter-protesters denounce the group.

ANTI-PEGIDA DEMONSTRATOR, JONAS STEIPE: “The only thing I want is for all the PEGIDA demonstrators to really reflect on what they are constantly hearing, and that would be my only plea to everybody participating. No hatred or anything, but simply to think it through.”

Chancellor Angela Merkel and other senior German politicians have called for people to stay away from rallies organised by PEGIDA – people who Merkel has said have “hatred in their hearts”.

Similar anti-Islamist gatherings took place in other cities across the country.